Money for Human Needs Not for War!
Statement for June, 2013
The Obama administration announced this June that it will arm the Syrian opposition and is considering setting up a No Fly Zone. The MN Anti-War Committee opposes ALL forms of U.S. intervention in Syria because such actions will escalate a conflict which, according to the United Nations, has already cost 93,000 lives.
This announcement is the newest step in U.S. intervention in Syria. Obama has been intervening in Syria’s conflict for awhile, by sending rations and medical supplies, by having the CIA coordinate weapons to Syria and by sending U.S. military forces to train Syrian rebels in Jordan. The CIA and special operations trainers will now continue to lead training which will now include U.S. weapons like small arms, assault rifles, shoulder-fired remote-propelled grenades and other anti-tank missiles. Obama has also pledged to send body armor and other equipment like night-vision goggles to the rebels.
Obama claims arming the rebels is justified because the Syrian government used chemical weapons against the rebels. Turkey recently caught 12 members of the Syrian opposition with sarin, and last month the top U.N. investigator in Syria, Carla Del Ponte, stated that she found evidence of the rebels, not the government, having used sarin. The truth is, the Syrian rebels are losing so the U.S. is scrambling for excuses to intervene. Remember when Bush lied about ‘weapons of mass destruction’ to justify the war in Iraq? The U.S. and NATO support the Syrian rebels despite their strong ties to Al-Qaeda because they want to replace Syrian President Bashar al-Assad with someone who will be a puppet for the U.S. in the Middle East.
Recently, NATO published a finding that 70% of Syrians support the Assad government. Also, Pew Research Center polls show that the majority of Americans oppose U.S. intervention in Syria. We should stay out of Syria and let the people decide what type of government they want!
No Fly Zones = Warfare
The Obama Administration is also considering a No Fly Zone which is discussed by politicians as an alternative to military intervention when in actuality it is warfare. In Iraq, the US/UN No Fly Zone stripped the sovereignty of Iraq by prohibiting the government from flying even domestic aircraft in its own country. The US Air Force conducted daily bombing campaigns which terrorized the civilian population. A No Fly Zone might sound better than military invasion, but it is in fact the taking over of a country by controlling its airspace. A No Fly Zone in Syria would cost $50 million a day. Our government is investing in endless war, while making cuts to basic social services at home. We need healthcare and education, not more war in the Middle East!
Wars Cannot Promote Human Rights!
The Obama administration is promoting an imperialist view that the U.S. has the ‘responsibility to protect’ and is asserting th assumption that U.S. military aid or action will improve the situation. The U.S. is using human rights as an excuse for intervention in Syria. However history has shown us in places like Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, and most recently Libya that bombs don’t bring people democracy, freedom or security. Instead U.S. warfare brings military occupation, a puppet government and more opportunities for U.S. corporations. While the reports of bloodshed are hard to hear about, in reality the decision about what government to have in Syria belongs to the Syrian people, and U.S. involvement only expands the conflict. The U.S. does not have the right to decide who is fit to rule and should not use its military to force a pro-U.S. government into power to further U.S. imperial or corporate interests.
Take Action! Call the White House and Congress!
Now more than ever it is important for people to call President Obama at 202-456-1111 and your members of Congress at 877-429-0678 to say NO to expanded intervention in the Syrian conflict. Public opinion is on our side. We need to show it.
Anti-War Committee * 612.379-3899 * antiwarcommittee.org